September 2, 1930 – June 29, 2022
In loving memory ~
Joyce Lorraine Sommervill (nee Bundy), was born on September 2, 1930 in Davidson, Saskatchewan.
She died in the presence of her family on June 29, 2022 in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta.
Joyce’s parents were settlers from England and Ontario. They lived and raised their children in the CN Rail station houses that dotted the prairie landscape. Joyce spoke often of the busy life in the station, of the house rumbling and shaking as trains arrived, and of the passengers coming and going. It was a happy, humble childhood.
In 1951 Joyce received her nursing degree from the Regina General Hospital. As a nursing student, she worked in the Fort Qu’Appelle tuberculosis clinic during the TB epidemic. She loved to tell the story of a gentleman who tried to enter the locked-down unit one day. When he was told to leave immediately, he replied timidly, “Nurse Bundy, I’m the Minister of Health. Could I enter, please?”
After graduation, Joyce worked as a nurse in Whitehorse, Yukon; it was the adventure of a lifetime. She later moved to Saskatoon to work at the University Hospital. It was there she met and married George (Pat) Sommervill, an ambitious young lawyer. They had three children, Shelley, Mike and Jolynn. During the many moves they made for Pat’s career, Joyce continued to work as a nurse, at the Foothills Hospital in Calgary, as the director of a health-care company in Edmonton, and as a respite and social worker in La Ronge, Yorkton and Vernon. She retired in 1995 in Vernon, B.C.
Joyce was a loyal member, fierce advocate and friend of Al-Anon for nearly 60 years. She never shied from sharing the story of Pat’s struggle with alcoholism and his subsequent 43 years of sobriety. Joyce herself struggled with a bi-polar condition for over three decades. Her faith, inner determination, joie de vivre and wicked sense of humour helped her persevere through those dark “down” times, as she called them.
After Pat passed away in 2006, Joyce lived in her own home for many years, with her village of support including Debbie and Lavina, Erik, Carol, Bev and Bill, Lue, Marion, her dog Minko, friends from Trinity United Church and the Victorian Residence where she lived from 2017-2021.
In 2021, Joyce made the decision to relocate to Rocky Mountain House, Alberta to be closer to her daughter Shelley and son-in-law Mike Day. During that brief time, at the age of 90, she started again, making dozens of new friends and living life to the fullest. On the day she died, she had a Stuart McLean story on the go, piano sheet music tucked in her walker to play later, had started writing her memoirs, was planning a family reunion, and was looking forward to the July 1st reworks and her next book club meet-up at the Ravines.
Joyce was a listener. She could also be a great talker, about everything from politics to the latest Net ix show. She never forgot to ask questions of those she was with, questions that were always on point. One left a conversation with Joyce feeling like you’d been seen and heard and that you added value to this planet. The enduring message that she has left with all who knew and loved her? Be. Like. JOYce.
Joyce is survived by her children Shelley (Mike), Mike (Penny), Jolynn (Graham), grandchildren Melissa (Mike), Ryan (Caitlyn), Brant (Sarah), Brynn (Vic) and Zoe (Sasha), brother Doug (Millie), sister Donna (Clarence), cousins Marnie and Warren, honorary children, grandchildren and great- grandchildren, Gina and Jade, Clayton and Karen, Mark and Heru, Nikki, Jim, Olivia and Gisella, the Macdonald family, Cee, nieces and nephews, David, Rob, Kevin, Liz, the Saskatchewan Sommervills and her many, many devoted friends, both human and canine.
Thank you to the Rocky Mountain House Health Centre and the acute care health care team including numerous hospitalists, Doctors Rogers, Ludewig, Esterhuyse and Kirstein, RNs, LPNs and HCAs.
Joyce was a nurse to the end, asking informed questions and discussing her desired outcomes. Thank you as well to Joyce’s mental health support team, Dr. Osinowo and therapist Chantel Ho os. And nally, a heartfelt shout-out to Home Care nurse Jillian Lawton and the entire team at West Country Family Services Association.
A celebration of Joyce’s life will be held on Friday September 2, 2022 at 2 pm at The Ravines at Park Avenue party room 5810 47th Avenue, Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. Condolences may be forwarded to: www.rockyfuneralhome.ca.
Memorial donations in Joyce’s name may be made to:
The Mental Health Foundation of Alberta: Mental Health Foundation Alberta West Country Family Service Association: www.wcfsa.com
Breast Cancer Society of Canada: www.bcsc.ca.
- Support Centre
- Submit News Tip
- Trending Now
- Good News
- Photo Galleries
- Special Sections
- Contact Us
- Site Map